Press Meeting

“Man can not live without certainty about his destiny”. With these words, Benedict XVI has invited us to get into the theme of the Meeting of this year, to find out which is the certainty that makes life worthy to be lived in every sphere and circumstance.

That’s what we have verified through 113 meetings with 321 speakers, 10 exhibitions, 26 shows, thanks to the contribution of almost 4000 volunteers (640 during the PreMeeting and 3232 during the Meeting, including 140 foreigners) and recording nearly 800.000 visitors from 38 different nationalities.

This edition has opened with the speech by Giorgio Napolitano, President of the Italian Republic, who “before such troubling events, before serious crisis,” he called everyone, particularly youth, to “speak the language of truth.” He explained: “We need new recruits and new contributions. Do not be influenced by what was settled in less than two decades: closures, entrenchment, bias, power goals, rampant personalities within each part. Bring your spiritual reasons in political tasks. Bring in time of uncertainty, your yearning for certainty. Because of that you represent a human resource for our Country. Make it worthy even more: it is my wish and my exhortation”.

And what did we find?
Talking about the history of our country, questioning ourselves about the crisis and the international situation, focusing the eyes on the culture of the past and on that of our time, we saw something happening in front of our eyes: that existence becomes an immense certainty. We have seen new people who do not surrender, as it is in the spirit of our people, documented by the exhibition on 150 years of subsidiarity: men that, supported by a proper ideal, may contribute to the common welfare.
We met people, who came from all over the world to tell their own experience, which, for a living certainty in their existence, they can look at crisis situations in a different way and can face them with a surprising confidence.
We have seen that friendship among peoples, in an hour made dramatic by the conflicts in the international scenario, is not a chimera, but it is possible to the ends of the earth: that the Egyptian friends testified – speakers and volunteers – present at the Meeting, as the Cardinal Antonios Naguib, the Bishop Armiah, the Chancellor of Al Azhar Usamah Elabed and now travelers fellow Wael Farouq, Joseph Weiler, Andrew Davison, John Milbank. A friendship with the Orthodox, Muslims, Jews, Anglicans, Buddhists, a friendship that is not programmed, which affects the history, as it was testified by whom told us : “In this place you can talk.” Amazed we listened to the Egyptian Professor Hassan Abdel Fattah, presenting the Arabic translation of The Risk of Education by Father Giussani, a sign of common concern for the education of young people, without which a society can not be rebuilt.

This is not obvious in a world where everything says the opposite. A world, as documented by the report on the meeting held by the Philosopher Costantino Esposito, who in front of the uncertainty look for an easy but comforting illusion, from one part in naturalism, according to which everything could be explained “by determined factors and physical-chemical and neural mechanisms”, on the other in cultural relativism.

Instead what we saw happened in a place where certainty has a name and a face, as Esposito documented again, who reminded us that “certainty is not our construction”. In fact, “Christ had to become the flesh of the world, to reopen the relentless cycle of natural time, acting as a principle of new knowledge, the only one able to exploit to the full meaning of the need for every single man.” And to find out, as mentioned by the French Philosopher Fabrice Hadjadj, “we must start from experience, existence,” because Christianity is not something of the past, but a chance, now, to live in this new way, as they testified, among others, Cardinal Dionigi Tettamanzi, Cardinal Robert Sarah, Father Pierbattista Pizzaballa in their speeches. And as we saw in the exhibition on the life of Jesus in Capernaum with the former catched by His presence, and for that they affected the history like no other in the world.

Politicians like Franco Frattini, Roberto Maroni, Giulio Tremonti, Maurizio Sacconi, Giuliano Amato, Enrico Letta, Piero Fassino, entrepreneurs such as John Elkann, Clara Gaymard, Tarek Ben Ammar, Fulvio Conti, Corrado Passera, Giuseppe Recchi, Ossama Bessada, Giuseppe Orsi, Giuliano Poletti and hundreds of guests and visitors who came to Rimini faced once again a people of “men without a country”, that is free, a people that says to Italy that this Country is not something that comes from highness, in large international financial thinkers, but comes from creativity, daughter of a human position of men capable of generating wish, realism and idealism, the only way to avoid becoming a Country for old men.

People that is certain of only one thing, essential, dear to everyone: the experience of real men, and therefore irreducible to any type of power, because they recognize that forces that change the history are the same of those that change the human heart. Man is not the creator of itself, but marked by something Other.
So the title of the XXXIII edition of the Meeting that will be held in Rimini from 19 to 25 August 2012, will be “by nature, man is relation to the infinite”.